The Final Four of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament will take place in Atlanta next month. Event organizers have just announced a three-day music fest called The 2013 NCAA Big Dance Concert Series which will be held during The Final Four in Atlanta’s Centennial Olympic Park on April 5 – 7. While many of the performers expected to play will be announced later, the three bands that will perform at the final day, which is being billed as “Capital One JamFest,” have been revealed.
Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Sting and the Dave Matthews Band will headline the Capital One JamFest on Sunday, April 7th. Muse will headline the Coke Zero Countdown on Saturday, April 6th. Flo Rida, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and Ludacris are the other acts that have been announced thus far. Keep your eyes on the event’s website for future announcements containing additional performers.
Today marks UN Day, aka the 67th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations Organization. To celebrate the occasion, the UN has put together a concert called “A Message For Peace featuring Stevie Wonder” which will take place tonight between 7PM and 9PM ET in the General Assembly Hall at UN HQ in NYC. The concert will be webcast live BELOW and then will be broadcast on a slew of TV stations including Palladia, BET and VH1 Classic on February 23rd at 7PM ET.
Stevie has called upon a slew of his famous friends to perform with him tonight including Sting, Paul Simon, Wyclef Jean, Elle Varner, Bebe Winans, Susan Sarandon and Malcolm Jamal Warner.
The stars came out in force at Radio City Music Hall in New York City on Thursday night for the Children’s Benefit Concert to benefit Paul Simon’sChildren’s Health Fund. Joining Simon in performing at the famed venue were Stevie Wonder, Steve Martin, Sting and his wife Trudie Styler, Aaron Neville, Ann and Nancy Wilson of Heart, Vince Gill, Amy Grant, Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson as well as a slew of famous presenters including Oprah Winfrey, Tina Fey, Spike Lee and Hillary Clinton.
The emotional high point of the night was when Paul Simon brought out his daughter Lulu who sang Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah and for a duet with her father on the fitting Father and Daughter. Simon also sang You’re The Reason Our Kids Are Ugly with wife and Lulu’s mother Edie Brickell, performed Late In The Evening with Ruben Blades, Sting singing Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better with wife Trudie Styler that even referred to their tantric sex sessions and a Loves Me Like A Rock finale that featured Sting, Stevie Wonder, Aisha Morris, Vince Gill and James Taylor.
We came across a number of videos from this fantastic evening…
Two of the biggest stars of the ’80s, Sting and Paul Simon, each added NYC-area dates to their previously announced tours. For Sting, he’ll bring the Back to Bass Tour to New York’s Roseland Ballroom on Nov. 8 – 9. Tickets go on sale to the public on Oct. 14, with an American Express presale taking place starting on October 10. The latest leg of Paul Simon’s So Beautiful or So What tour will visit the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark on November 27. Tickets for that show go on sale to the public on Oct. 15.
Of the 25+ songs Sting performed from throughout his career at Saturday’s 60th birthday bash, The Police classic Demolition Man was nowhere to be found. The man born as Gordon Sumner righted that wrong last night, when he stopped by the Ed Sullivan Theater to perform the Ghost In The Machine tune augmented by a three-piece horn section. Take a look…
Hall of Fame rocker Sting sure knows how to throw a party. To celebrate his 60th birthday, the former Police front man welcomed a cavalcade of legendary performers to rock with him at the Beacon Theatre in New York City this past Saturday night including Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Lady Gaga, Chris Botti and Branford Marsalis. In fact, nearly every tune Sting and his band played at the 27-song show featured at least one guest.
Here’s hoping the report that official footage from the show will be released for free in November as part of a free app is true, because there’s plenty of performances that haven’t made it to YouTube yet including Billy Joel sitting in on Everything She Does Is Magic, Herbie Hancock working his magic on Sister Moon and Marsalis guesting on If You Love Somebody, Set Them Free. The evening ended with a Scottish bag pipe troupe taking over the stage, a present from Sting’s wife Trudie Styler.
Set One: Robert Downey Jr. Intro, Englishman In New York (with Branford Marsalis), All This Time (with Joe Sumner and Jimmy Nail), Seven Days (with Chris Botti), If You Love Somebody, Set Them Free (with Branford Marsalis), Walking On The Moon (with Will I.am), When We Dance (with Chris Botti), Hounds of Winter, Sister Moon (with Herbie Hancock and Lionel Loueke), Consider Me Gone (with Herbie Hancock and Branford Marsalis), Driven To Tears (with Robert Downey Jr), Whenever I Say Your Name (with Mary J Blige), Brand New Day (with Stevie Wonder)
Set Two: Roxanne (Bryn Terfel), Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic (with Billy Joel), Don’t Stand So Close To Me (with Billy Joel), End of The Game, Why Should I Cry For You (with Joe Sumner), Wrapped Around Your Finger (Rufus Wainwright), Bring On The Night/When The World Is Running Down (with Branford Marsalis and Herbie Hancock), King of Pain (with Lady Gaga), Fragile (with Stevie Wonder), I Hung My Head (Bruce Springsteen), Fields of Gold (Bruce Springsteen), Can’t Stand Losing You (with Bruce Springsteen), Desert Rose (Everyone), Every Breath You Take (Everyone), Message In A Bottle
Sting has opened up his address book and invited a slew of his famous friends to help him celebrate 25 years as a solo artist as well as his 60th birthday at the Beacon Theatre on October 1. The list of guests expected to collaborate with the bassist at the Beacon includes Bruce Springsteen, Lady Gaga, Stevie Wonder, Mary J. Blige, Herbie Hancock, Robert Downey Jr., Vince Gill, Will.i.am, Rufus Wainwright, Branford Marsalis and Billy Joel.
The concert will benefit the Robin Hood Foundation to support the fight against poverty in New York City. Want to attend? Well unfortunately none of the tickets for this event will go on sale to the general public. A pre-sale for Sting Fan Club members took place earlier today and the rest will presumably go to big wigs who pony up a tidy sum. Sting will be backed by his longtime backing band and hopefully he will webcast or broadcast in some way this once-in-a-lifetime concert for us working stiffs.
People like to discount Wikipedia for being a source of misinformation, but I’ll tell ‘ya, a quick read of the page for Ain’t No Sunshine nets you some pretty damn good factoids on this 1971 Bill Withers classic. 1) Produced by Booker T. 2) Donald “Duck” Dunn plays the bass 3) Withers was working at a factory making toilet seats when he wrote the song. Okay, #3 they claim to have a source for from Rolling Stone but the link is broken, but I *want* to believe them. I’m sure it’s true. Anyway, literally hundreds of people have covered Ain’t No Sunshine, a search of allmusic.com brings you 1,456 results. What we’ve got below is 10 renditions we think are worth a listen.
This same Buddy Guy album (Bring ‘Em In) appeared two weeks ago in the I Put A Spell On You Cover Wars. Carlos Santana joined Guy on that cover while Tracy Chapman joins him on this one. This cover features an early key change, multiple vocalists, horns – the whole nine yards.
READ ON for the audio and video of nine more Ain’t No Sunshine covers…
Quite a meeting of the musical minds went down at the National Mall this past Sunday where 150,000 people came out for a rally in support of action on climate change. Bob Weir, Sting, The Roots, John Legend, Jimmy and Passion Pit were among the artists who performed over the course of the event. Sting rocked a smattering of Police classics backed by The Roots including Fragile, One World and this take of Message In A Bottle…
For Sting’s upcoming tour he will be backed by the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra for a set filled with Police classics and solo gems. Mr. Sumner will rework all of his greatest hits for his first extended tour since The Police reunited. A few dates have been announced with more to follow.
Let’s take a look at seven other stories of interest…
Finally, in a move we all knew was the smartest one Aerosmith could make, the Boston rockers announced that lead singer Steven Tyler has rejoined the band. After a few months of nastiness, all seems to be forgiven between Tyler and his mates. Well, for now at least.
For the third installment of Through The Years – the column in which we prepare a YouTube playlist featuring a video from each year of a band’s career – we’re focusing on the music of Sting and The Police.
We start with a video featuring the first Police single, Fallout, from 1977 and include a clip from each year right on up to 2009. Megastars Bruce Springsteen, Phil Collins and Eric Clapton all make cameos so grab yourself some popcorn and take a look…
READ ON for the Sting & The Police Through The Years tracklisting…
In 1988, former Police frontman Sting was touring behind the fabulous, if not his greatest ever, solo release Nothing Like the Sun. The band that toured behind him consisted of none other than the great Branford Marsalis on the sax and a cast of top-shelf musicians/singers that delivered the songs from this album with all the class, style and beauty with which they were captured on the album.
The live shows didn’t have all the glitz and glamor of your typical ’80s rock show. Instead, the music and the songs were the true showcase of these performances and Sting stepped up to the occasion. Sting also managed to show his varied influences and inspirations by covering songs by artists/composers such as George/Ira Gershwin, Jimi Hendrix, Woody Guthrie and Frank Zappa.
Sting, over the years, has become associated with a more “adult contemporary” style of music, but trust me – this show has something for music lovers of any age. The quality of this recording is off-the-charts as this show – at LA’s Wiltern Theatre - was originally recorded with the intention of having some of these songs used for a live album that never saw the light of day. Luckily, someone leaked these tracks so we all can enjoy ‘em.
It was a mere matter of time before the Beatles had to show up for a Bust Outs segment. Well, that day has finally come. Today, we are running through some stellar Beatles’ cover Bust Outs in video format. That’s right, you get a reprieve from from all that new wave, high-tech shit like Imeem and MediaFire. Today, it’s just good old fashion YouTubes of some incredible Beatles covers. Enjoy!
Yesterday – Ray Charles
Listening to Ray Charles take on Lennon/McCartney’s Yesterday, you can almost tell he is coming off the tail end of a China White bender involving a bevy of impure tour ladies. In other words, you can feel the man’s guilt. This performance takes place as part of a journey to Tel Aviv amidst visits to some of the holiest lands (Ray Charles: Soul of the Holy Land August 1973), where I’ve gotta believe he is in search of some redemption. Call me crazy, but during this heart string tugging rendition there’s some real weight on those shoulders.
Ray’s Yesterday actually follows a medley of Beatles covers, whereby he also has his way with other classics like The Long and Winding Road, Let the Good Times Roll and I Can’t Stop Loving You. Be sure to check ‘em out.
Read on for Beatles’ covers by Sting, the Dead, Gov’t Mule and more…